Rep. Eric Massa (D-NY) has bewildered the political
press. A week ago he announced he was resigning due to serious health
problems. Days later he accepted responsibility for an ethics violation
related to sexually-charged comments and said that was the cause of his departure. Then, over the weekend,
he changed his story again saying Democratic leaders forced him out
because he was unwilling to support President Obama's health care
reform. That gained him support in some right-wing circles and Politico
even hailed him a "conservative media hero
." So whose side is Massa on?
- He's No Friend of the GOP, writes conservative Michelle Malkin:
"He's been a progressive zealot and political opportunist his entire
career. He's claimed conspiracy before, is intimately bonded with the
nutroots, and climbed the political ladder with backing from the
odious, anti-war-hoaxer-embracing Gen. Wesley Clark."
- He Clearly Hates the Dems, writes Steve Benen
at The Washington Monthly: "After initially taking responsibility for
his own 'difficulties,' Massa has now decided that his missteps are his
party's fault, and he's lashing out wildly in the hopes of punishing
his perceived Democratic enemies."
- He's On America's Side, tweets Glenn Beck, who will host Massa on his show on Tuesday: "I just spoke with him off air. All Americans need To hear him. Exclusive 2morrow fox."
- He's Ultimately Helping the Dems,
notes Rick Klein speaking with Greta Van Susteren: "His resignation is
actually a good thing for Speaker Pelosi and Democrats. In the bizarro
math right now in the House, it reduces the number that you actually
need to get to. So Speaker Pelosi loses a Democrat, but she gets a
vote on health care."
- It's Purely Self Preservation, writes Chris Bowers
at Open Left: "He is going to become a martyr for many opponents of
health reform legislation. I guess he has decided that is a better
track to take than being disgraced over sexual harassment charges. It
would have been a more believable tack if he had taken that approach in
the first place, and not claimed full responsibility for the sexual
harassment, and if by flat-out changing his story, he is receiving a
huge wave of new support."
- Either Way, His Story Just Doesn't Add Up, writes Ed Morrissey
at Hot Air: "Massa is ill with cancer and says he needs to leave
Congress to focus on his therapy. That's certainly understandable.
But Massa can't claim that Hoyer and Pelosi railroaded him out of
office if he resigns on his own for health reasons. If he wants to be
the 'deciding vote' on ObamaCare, all he has to do is stick around. If
he doesn't, that's entirely his decision, but it sounds like a smoke
screen rather than an exposé."
Want to add to this story? Let us know in comments
or send an email to the author at
jhudson at theatlantic dot com.
You can share ideas for stories on the Open Wire.